The 7.1 magnitude California earthquake in July of 2019 sure did rock the Southern part of the Golden State and was even felt as far as Las Vegas. It was, later on, discovered that the quake has created a massive crack in the earth’s surface.
If Planet Lab’s satellite images are anything to go by, the photos it took showed that the 7.1 magnitude earthquake formed a fissure that is so huge, this can be very visible from space. The before and after images dating from July 4-6, 2019 were even tweeted by the private imaging firm’s Chief Executive Will Marshal confirming the presence of the huge fissure.
Further, it shows that the giant crack is near the epicenter of the quake, which according to Interesting Engineering hit 11 miles north-northeast of Ridgecrest, California. This happened on July 4, 2019, about 34 hours following a quake that measured 6.4 in magnitude. The crack goes through the Mojave Desert and across a highway as the fissure measured around a couple of inches wide. This too gets deeper and more visible as it branches out.
Ridgecrest Earthquake before (4th July) & after (6th July) images from Doves, clearly showing surface rupture. Thx @rsimmon @PlanetLabs @USGS RT @USGSBigQuakes Prelim M7.1 Earthquake 35.767, -117.605 Jul-06 03:19 UTC, updates https://t.co/waWvmvQZ88 pic.twitter.com/cUNxdMazum
— Will Marshall (@Will4Planet) July 7, 2019
Chances are low
Californians are pretty much fear-stricken as they worry that an earthquake with similar strength could happen again. However, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) stated that the chances of such an occurrence are likely low.
The agency further explained that the 7.1 quake was a result of a so-called “strike-slip faulting in the crust of the North America plate.” It went on to state that the eastern California region has hosted several moderate-sized quakes and for the past four decades, before that July 4 rumbling hit, eight other magnitudes five-plus quakes took place within 50 kilometers of the July 6, 2019 earthquake.
The largest M5 according to the agency was on September 20, 1995, just three kilometers west from where the recent quake originated. Additionally, this was felt within the areas of China Lake and Ridgecrest and more widely from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.
This massive crack in California has grown to draw curious residents and even folks from out of town that some traveled for hours just to catch a glimpse of it and take selfies.
It’s a known fact that the state of California is an earthquake-prone area since it is near a fault line. The Seismologist Egill Hauksson that aftershock could last for months and even years.